The other day, I put my two sons into my pickup truck, and headed out to the east end of Long Island.  My first son, Liam, is nearly four, my second son, Evan, is a little older than one.  As we passed sod farms and white sand beaches, I listened to Itzhak Perlman playing some short little violin pieces.  Liam was looking at his picture book, Evan was happily babbling, and I was content.  And in our truck, a beautiful melody began to play.  It was one of those moments in which music and life seem to overlap so perfectly that the two are indistinguishable.  It was Rachmaninov’s “It’s Peaceful Here,” in the hands of Itzhak Perlman.  Stripped of all superlatives, this piece celebrates the quiet everyday.  Fittingly, the piece is as brief as the ephemeral moment which it celebrates.

As I set up my paints this afternoon, I held on to that memory with such a joy.  I knew I was going to paint a still life today, but didn’t know what.  I decided to paint the joy of that moment.  I placed the violin and table in front of the sun drenched window, and began to paint.

“Happiness makes up for in height what it lacks in length.”  – Robert Frost


“A thing of beauty is a joy forever:  Its loveliness increases; it will never pass into nothingness.”  – John Keats


Please click the following to listen to Itzhak Perlman play this tune.

It’s Peaceful Here

“Summer”, three hour progress


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